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Monday, 19 November 2018

vHive Releases Autonomous Drone Solution for Complex Cell Tower Inspection

Hive, the developer of a cloud-based software solution that enables enterprises to deploy autonomous drone hives to digitize their field operations and assets, announced today the enhancement of its fully automated workflow for cell tower inspection using drones to also support guy wire towers.

"Millions of cell towers worldwide require ongoing inspection and surveying as part of their ongoing operations," said vHive CTO Tomer Daniel. "vHive's solution has already enabled telecom companies to perform thousands of autonomous tower surveys.  vHive now addresses the complexities of autonomously surveying guy towers. Our ability to intelligently orchestrate one or many drones to acquire data on complex structures such as cell towers, bridges and cranes has enabled us to provide ground breaking solutions to unmet industry needs."

"vHive enables enterprises to scale their drone operations," said vHive CEO Yariv Geller. "vHive's solution uniquely empowers field technicians to fly autonomous, off-the-shelf drones, generating data in a fraction of the time and cost required by human operators. vHive enables true enterprise scale while enhancing employee safety."

vHive provides solutions to companies in a variety of industries ranging from telecom towers, to rail, bridges and civil engineering. vHive enables tower companies and mobile network operators to gain intelligence on their infrastructure by capturing field data in minimal time and generating 2D and 3D tower models to visualize, analyze and share. Safely handling the complexity of autonomous flight and data acquisition in a guy wire tower environment further enhances the company's solution for the telecom industry, enabling customers to address a variety of asset types that they need to digitize.

Hive's solution will be demonstrated at TowerXchange Asia in Singaporebetween December 4-5th.

Expedia's Black Friday & Cyber Monday Sale Offers for the First Time Up To 50 Percent Off Flights and 90 Percent Off Hotels in the Expedia App

It's official!® for the first time is offering up to 50 percent off flights in addition to amazing hotel coupons including an extra 75 percent off online and 90 percent off redeemable in the Expedia App, plus more great discounts on packages and activities during its annual Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale.
"Black Friday and Cyber Monday have historically been more for big retailers selling packaged goods, and not necessarily a big moment in time to sell travel," says Aaron Price, head of marketing for Brand Expedia. "We know consumers are increasingly interested in spending money on experiences over material goods, which is likely why we've seen a rise in travel offerings during this key time. Each year we have gotten stronger and stronger at delivering amazing travel deals to meet that demand, and this year we've worked hard to source more than five times as many deals from our travel partners as we've had in years past."
Consumers take advantage of Black Friday discounts to get away ASAP
While some travelers are booking spring break or summer travel for the following year, the majority are treating themselves to near-term trips during a very busy and sometimes expensive season. Based on 2017 data from Expedia's Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale, here's what travelers leveraged the deals to book1:
  • End-of-year travel: In 2017, more than half of the flights booked during Black Friday weekend were for trips that took place before the end of the year.
  • Holiday trips: About 1 in 5 of the trips booked during Black Friday weekend 2017 were for travel during the Christmas and New Year's Eve timeframe (Dec. 21, 2017 – Jan. 1, 2018)
  • Last-minute getaways: More than a quarter of the hotel nights booked during Black Friday weekend 2017 were for last-minute travel (between 5 and 14 days out).
  • Winter sun & city fun: Top destinations booked by US travelers during Black Friday weekend 2017 include OrlandoLas VegasNew YorkCancun and San Diego.
"What this tells us is that U.S. travelers are taking advantage of these amazing deals on flights, hotel and packages to get away ASAP. The top destinations provide even more color, showing travelers are taking trips to the theme parks in Orlando, seeking out holiday sun in Cancun and southern California, and treating themselves to a weekend of entertainment in Vegas," says Price.
Expedia's Black Friday and Cyber Monday Travel Deals
Expedia's biggest travel sale of the year officially kicks off Friday, November 23 at 9:00 a.m. PST and runs through 11:59 p.m. PST on Cyber Monday. These coupons are available for a limited time while supplies last, so customers need to act fast! And even if you miss a coupon, there are still amazing deals all over the site for hotels, activities, cruises, car rentals and vacation packages.
  • Black Friday
    • Coupon 1: $100 off $200 flights
    • Coupon 2: 75% off standalone hotels
    • Coupon 3: $500 off $1,000 vacation packages
    • Coupon 4: $25 off $50 activities  
    • Coupon 5: 10% off standalone hotels
  • Cyber Monday – Most Cyber Monday coupons are available for a limited time while supplies last, however there are three amazing coupons that will refresh every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST. So, if you miss out on one, you can keep coming back.
    • Coupon 1: $100 off $200 flights – this coupon will refresh every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST
    • Coupon 2: 90% off in the Expedia App – this coupon will refresh every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST
    • Coupon 3: 50% off standalone hotels – this coupon will refresh every hour from 9 a.m. PST to 3 p.m. PST
    • Coupon 4: 10% off standalone hotels
    • Coupon 5: $100 off $1,000 vacation packages
    • Coupon 6: $100 off $200 activities  
Travelers can access all of the amazing Black Friday and Cyber Monday travel deals by visiting the sale homepage and on the award-winning Expedia app, which is available for download on iOS and Android devices for free in the App Store and Google Play. For more information on how to redeem desktop and mobile coupons, visit the Expedia Viewfinder blog.

Amazon today introduced Alexa Skill Blueprints in India, a new way to create your own personalized skills and responses for Alexa

Amazon today introduced Alexa Skill Blueprints in India, a new way to create your own personalised skills and responses for Alexa. Using a set of easy-to-use templates anyone can create customised experiences for Alexa within minutes just by filling in the blanks. Whether it’s your own answer to the question “Alexa, who makes the best Rajma Chawal in the world?” or a skill that helps you surprise parents with a personalised story narrated by Alexa, “Alexa, open My Dad's Story.” Alexa Skill Blueprints allow you to build experiences into Alexa that are personalised to you and help make Alexa even more useful around your home. The skills you create are specially designed for you and your family, and will only appear on the devices registered to your Amazon account.

“Alexa Skill Blueprints are a new way for you to customise your Alexa experience. Personalised skills and responses make Alexa even more knowledgeable, delivering a delightful experience that is unique to you and your family,” said Dilip R.S., Country Manager for Alexa Skills, Amazon India. “You don’t need experience to build skills or coding to get started. At home we created our family trivia skill in a matter of minutes, and Alexa is keeping everyone entertained in a totally new and personal way.”

Using Alexa Skill Blueprints is as easy as filling in the blanks. You can have fun customising responses to questions like “Alexa, what is the best city?" or “Alexa, who has the best sense of humor?” You can also use Skill Blueprints to create an interactive adventure story with your child as the lead character and rename the skill as desired, “Alexa, start Tina’s Story” or create a skill to relive hilarious family moments, “Alexa, open Family Jokes.” The skills and responses you create with Alexa Skill Blueprints will be available instantly on the devices associated with your account.

You can also share your personalised skill with family and friends to use on their own Alexa-enabled devices. Skills can be shared via email, text, WhatsApp, or social media including Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Recipients will receive a direct link where they'll be able to see details about your skill and have the ability to enable it for use on their own account.

Getting Started with Alexa Skill Blueprints:
Creating your own Alexa skill and responses is simple. Just ask “Alexa, tell me about Alexa blueprints” and follow three easy steps:
1.       Select your blueprint template by visiting the Alexa Skill Blueprints website: There you can browse through 30 Skill Blueprints across four categories including Fun & Games, Learning & Knowledge, At Home, and Storyteller.
2.       Unleash your creativity. Each blueprint comes with pre-filled content that can be used as-is or customised as you like.
3.       With just one click your skill will be available on all Alexa-enabled devices associated with your Amazon account.

There is no limit to the number of skills you can create. Need to add even more hilarious jokes to the “Family Jokes” skill? No problem, editing is simple on the Alexa Skill Blueprints website.

Alexa Skill Blueprints available at launch include:
Fun & Games
1.       Inspirations: Curate a list of your favorite motivational quotes.
2.       Roast: Roast your friends and family with lighthearted burns.
3.       First Letter: Play a game of categories starting with a certain letter.
4.       Family Jokes: Create a list of your favorite jokes for when you need a laugh.
5.       Trivia: Create a multiple choice trivia game on any topic.
6.       Couples Quiz: Play to find out which couple knows each other best.
7.       Birthday Trivia: Play to see who knows the birthday girl or boy best.
8.       Compliments: Flatter your favorites with a list of custom compliments.
9.       Family Trivia: Play together and brush up on your family history.
10.   World's Best Dad: Celebrate dad with a list of customised compliments.
11.   Interactive Story: Create a story and test your memory.
12.   Three Word Sort: Train your brain in this topsy-turvy sorting game
13.   World's Best Mom: Celebrate mom with a list of customised compliments.
14.   Five Item Rush: Score your friends in this wacky categories game

Learning & Knowledge
15.   Flash Cards: Study, test yourself, and master any subject by voice
16.   Facts: Keep a list of facts on your favorite topic, all in one place
17.   Quiz: Challenge yourself and others with a customisable quiz
18.   Listening Quiz: Listen and recall with this listening quiz skill.

At Home
19.   Custom Q&A: Customise responses to your questions
20.   Houseguest: Make your guests feel at home with quick access to important info
21.   Whose Turn: Figure out whose turn it is to do something by having Alexa choose for you.
22.   Task Chart: Schedule and track weekly chores for your entire household.
23.   Roommate: Help your roommates by providing them with all the important information they should know.
24.   Sidekick: Alexa always has your back with these supportive and funny responses.

25.   Adventure: Write an adventure story where your child is the hero
26.   Fairy Tale: Customise an interactive prince and princess-themed tale
27.   Sci-Fi: Create an interactive story with a far-out theme
28.   Fable: Create a short narrative with a moral of the story
29.   All About Dad: Surprise dad with a personalised story narrated by Alexa.
30.   All About Mom: Surprise mom with a personalised story narrated by Alexa.

Alexa Skill Blueprints is available now for customers in India. To get started with Alexa Skill Blueprints visit: For frequently asked questions:

Itel launches A44 Power smartphone with 4000 mAh Battery, running on Android Oreo for Rs 5999

Itel launched its first 5.45” FWVGA+ full screen display smartphone with 4000mAh Li-Polymer battery and Dual Rear Camera in the Indian market. The itel A44 Power comes with advanced features promising a delightful smartphone experience for customers. The device runs on Android Oreo and costs Rs 5,999/-.

Itel A44 with Full Screen Display
Commenting on the launch, Mr. Goldee Patnaik, Head of Marketing itel Business Unit said“India is witnessing a significant shift in the consumption patterns of smartphones as the need for latest features & technology at a budget friendly price is increasing. At itel, we truly believe in making technology accessible and affordable for customers by offering them great value in every purchase they make with us. itel A44 Power brings with it the powerful 4000mAh Li-Polymer battery for our target audience along with 5.45” FWVGA+ Full Screen Display and Dual Rear Camera at a budget friendly price point. We surely believe that A44 Power will enrich the consumers with an enthralling mobile experience.”

Specifications – itel A44 Power
Screen Size
13.84 cm (5.45”) FW + Full Screen
4000mAh Li-Polymer with OTG Powerbank support
Rear Camera
5MP + VGA  with flash
Front Camera
2 MP with flash
Face Unlock
OS Version
Android 8.1 Go edition
64 bit 1.4 GHz Quad Core
Display Resolution
480x960 pixels
1GB + 8GB
Expandable Memory
32GB Dedicated slot
Aqua Blue, Champagne Gold, Deep Grey
INR 5999

itel A44 Power | 5.45” Full Screen Display + Bigger/Robust Battery at a never before price
The itel A44 Power comes with 5.45 “HD+ FWVGA+ Full Screen Display screen along with 4000 mAh Li-Polymer battery, Dual Camera and Face Unlock making it itel’s first in the sub 6k segment. itel A44 Power runs on 4000mAh Li-Polymer battery optimised to give upto 3 days battery backup in 1 charge on normal usage. Despite bigger battery, it has a compact design with a 9.5mm thickness with vibrant colours. It also has an OTG Power Bank support which can also charge other phones. The device comes with Android 8.1 Go edition OS for quick and seamless multitasking. The itel A44 Power is powered by 64 bit 1.4 GHz quad core processor for fast and smooth performance. It is equipped with 1GB RAM and 8GB internal storage along with a dedicated expandable memory up to 32GB. From a camera perspective, the smartphone is equipped with a 5MP + VGA Dual Rear Camera and 2 MP selfie camera, both with flash

itel A44 Power will be available across India today onwards.

Blackberry to acquire AI and ML leader Cylance for $1.4B in its largest acquisition

oday announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to wholly acquire Cylance, an artificial intelligence and cybersecurity leader, for US $1.4 billion in cash, plus the assumption of unvested employee incentive awards. Pending regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, the deal is expected to close prior to the end of BlackBerry’s current fiscal year (February 2019).

“Cylance’s leadership in artificial intelligence and cybersecurity will immediately complement our entire portfolio, UEM and QNX in particular. We are very excited to onboard their team and leverage our newly combined expertise,” said John Chen, Executive Chairman and CEO of BlackBerry. “We believe adding Cylance’s capabilities to our trusted advantages in privacy, secure mobility, and embedded systems will make BlackBerry Sparkindispensable to realizing the Enterprise of Things.”

According to Gartner in its most recent Internet of Things Backbone Survey: security was cited as the top barrier to IoT success (35%), with privacy concerns (25%), and potential risks and liabilities (25%) also in the top five.

Cylance is a pioneer in applying artificial intelligence, algorithmic science, and machine learning to cybersecurity software that has proven highly effective at predicting and preventing known and unknown threats to fixed endpoints. The fast-growing company has become a market leader with an advanced and lightweight agent that resides on the endpoint, operates both online and off, and requires a minimum of memory and power to function. Founded in 2012, Cylance generates highly recurring revenue from over 3,500 active enterprise customers, including more than 20% of the Fortune 500.

“Our highly skilled cybersecurity workforce and market leadership in next-generation endpoint solutions will be a perfect fit within BlackBerry where our customers, teams and technologies will gain immediate benefits from BlackBerry’s global reach,” said Stuart McClure, Co-Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Cylance. “We are eager to leverage BlackBerry’s mobility and security strengths to adapt our advanced AI technology to deliver a single platform.”

BlackBerry Spark is a next-generation secure chip-to-edge communications platform for the EoT that will create and leverage trusted connections between any endpoint. Designed for ultra-security and industry-specific safety-certifications, such as ISO 26262 in automobiles, BlackBerry Spark will leverage the company’s deep portfolio of technology that includes FIPS-validated, app-level, AES 256-bit encryption to ensure data is always protected. BlackBerry Spark enables organizations to comply with stringent multi-national regulatory requirements. In fact, BlackBerry is the only EoT platform provider to achieve Common Criteria EAL4+ for both iOS and Android, offering the highest level of security in the market.

BlackBerry expects that after the anticipated close of the transaction, Cylance will operate as a separate business unit within BlackBerry Limited.